notching fiddle leaf fig

We recently moved it because we moved the unit it was sitting on and very suddenly (as in within days) it’s leaves have all turned yellow and are falling off. If you can’t wait that long, the easiest way to get a bare trunk is to pull the bottom leaves off, BUT – they will not grow back. In my opinion the attribute that makes the FLF appear most like a tree is the removal of the lower leaves when it gets big enough. Thanks for the tips, very helpful! Patience is key 🙂 hopefully you will get some growth soon! Notching. Testing to feel if the top 1-2 inches are dry with your finger is a great way to know if your FLF needs water. I’m in Australia too 🙂 Sounds like that window would be perfect for your Fiddle Leaf! I have 2 FLF. Notching is a method of encouraging a Fiddle Leaf Fig to branch that doesn’t involve removing any height off the plant. Taking a while to dry out in this plastic pot with the type of soil Lowe’s used. Thank you for this post! It has three branches and I really want just a tree-type. I’ve left all the leaves on the trunk but I would like more of a tree look. It did grow 2 new leaves very quickly before this began to happen as well. It sounds strange but it does help! Hi there, Apologies if I missed you explaining this one but my question is, my fiddle leaf is about 50cm tall. Fiddle leaf fig plants are sold as trees or bushes. When you water, it’s best to fully soak the soil until the excess runs out the bottom. Pruning activates branches, so you should start to see some buds forming on the stem below where it was pruned 🙂. If there is, it sounds like it needs to be repotted! This makes them somewhat challenging for the home grower, who is likely to have trouble duplicating these steamy conditions. It is a really fun plant to grow! Thanks for all your help. All the best 🙂, Your email address will not be published. And you can definitely propagate what you prune – more info on propagation here. Hey Kyra, I’m wondering if she meant to braid the stems together? I’ve read most of the comments about pruning and supporting growth but I’m still not sure how to go about getting a thicker “trunk” on my FLF. Hope the tips in this post can help! Such as being near a draft or heater. Ever since I wrote the post Growing and Pruning Your Fiddle Leaf Fig, the biggest question people have had is about how to grow a Fiddle Leaf Fig from bush to tree form! Mine is the same. During winter, Fiddle Leaf Figs can sometimes be ‘dormant’. Generally it’s best to prune no more than a third of a plant to prevent it from going into shock. Overwatering is a big Fiddle Leaf Fig killer. in terms of no new leaves growing, I’m sure it is just settling into its new environment as Fiddle Leafs generally don’t like change. I know I can trim off the brown on the edges, but these leaves are mostly brown. Aw that’s great Janae! I would like to try and take some of the smaller plants and separate them to grown in their own pots but I’m not wondering if it’s a bit too soon. Thanks Ruth! My FLF that I’m training into a tree is well on its way – branching at the top now! Now the problem is all our windows have heater vents along them and I want to place it near the window for maximum light I’m scared that the dry air might kill the plant. There’s two branches growing down at the dirt level. I just received a fiddle a couple weeks ago and so far so good. Yes, there was an issue with the image in the link but hopefully it will be fixed. It won’t stand up on its own and I have stakes holding it up. However seeing as its winter, if it gets an hour or two of direct morning light I think it will do fine and be very happy. More FLFs is always better, haha. Should I start the braiding now? Our eyes may interpret our home as bright. If you wanted to keep them, you could even try propagating them in water! Hello! Is this a lack of humidity or maybe misting with hard water from the hose? 🙂. Then before I could move it back inside two leaves got direct sun and turned brown. You can also get 15% off with the code dossier2021 thanks to Soltech. If you’re concerned about the smaller branch not growing, you could try facing that side of the plant closest to the light! The answer is yes! Hi Shannon, that is a lot of growth, sounds like you are doing something right! Hey Kimberly, thanks so much – I’m always happy to help and reply to comments 🙂 It’s normal for the soil to be more wet/damp the further into the pot, and it will dry out first at the top. I hope you now feel confident about caring for your Fiddle Leaf Fig in winter! I really am after a “tree” look. Some people even plant 3 or 4 together and braid their trunks as they grow. Don’t expect to see any improvement before April (and warmer temperatures). You can do this if you are ok with the trimmed leaf staying that way. I have an 8 foot tall fiddle leave who has lost most of its leaves on top leaving exposed branches with no leaves on them. The plant has multiple green stems coming up from the roots with small leaves beginning to grow. Jeanne Lu. If it all sounds a bit much, I would suggest to start with a new, smaller, singe-trunk FLF to get the lollipop shape you want and enjoy how much your original FLF has grown! Or will the trunk begin to form as it grows and then I can begin pruning smaller leaves off the lower portions, as you described? To promote a branch, notch above a node or bud. It’s fun and so rewarding to be able to do this process yourself! That’s great Brenda! Hi!!! With less leaves to support up top, it won’t be as bendy. Hey Nicole! Hey Rebecca, how often they need watering will vary from plant to plant, depending on how much light they get, the soil, environment, size of plant and a bunch of other factors. Required fields are marked *. But again, if there’s no unhealthy signs of this already on the plant, I would say the soil is most likely fine. It keeps sending out leaves from the top seems to be growing well. FLFs do love light but they’ll do fine without any direct light. If you’re able to keep it in the house with as much light as possible, I think that would be the best way to make sure it makes it through winter! Wait until next spring risking that some of the smaller plants may get a bit shaded out. Hey Jaime, I think the plant will keep growing from the top when it is ready, unless the branches themselves have died. I was wondering – throughout these 6 weeks can I try notching to encourage new branches? Fertilizing your FLF when they’ve slowed or stopped growth can result in a buildup of unused fertilizer in the soil, or it getting flushed out of the pot and wasted. You could either prune the two trunks part-way down, so that the trunks will grow further branches and become the bushy, tree-like shape themselves. I try to separate now, risking that they may be too young and struggle to grow Worse locations are ones that have less light, humidity or temperatures lower than around 65F (18C). I got about 10 pots with leaves propagation that I have started in water and then placed them in pots. To promote a fruiting spur or fruiting bud, notch below a node or bud. The name comes from the thick violin-shaped leaves that grow off the plant’s woody stems. Once every 10 days is generally a good time to water. Let me know how you go! My question is do you think it’s possible to separate three the almost 5 foot trees at this point? Sometimes I prefer to bring home smaller plants, as you can then experiment and grow the plant to the size and shape you like. Your local nursery should be able to help with specifics! Contact Us. Coloured lights are more specifically designed towards a certain type of growth (such as flowers or fruiting). I understand during dormant fall/winter months we shouldn’t fertilize as often when watering because they aren’t growing new leaves but should I fertilize the FLF that has new growth? 🙂. I have seen others have success this way. You can find more details on notching here. I’m pretty sure the problem is that it’s not getting enough light — the brightest window in my new place is east-facing and so it only gets about five hours of sunlight. It’s normal for most plants to slow down growth during the cooler months. All the best! You could still tie the branches together, however this won’t necessarily help the plant in the long-run, in terms of getting it to stand straight on it’s own. All the best! Sharlee. Hi Liz, have a look at this forum link which talks a lot about notching in detail and also shows some photos: Fiddle Leaf Fig Trees (and bushes) are still all the rage in home decor. How do I promote new leaf growth to get the lollipop shape I want. Cutting your fiddle leaf fig or any plant in the fig family will produce an oozing, milky, white latex sap. When performing this method, you can perform two tactics I have a FLF and it was doing well until I took it outside to give it a shower. Trending: Indoor Plants with Pink Foliage. you can read it here. I just bought 2 new, small FLF about 2 weeks ago and have watered them once so far. Thanking you, Watering is dependant on so many individual factors rather than than a set schedule! See if you can read on the instructions how often it says to use or change them, and when their time is up then I think it would be fine to switch over 🙂. I’m down to 2 branches of leaves and they are starting to droop. Hi, I brought home a beautiful fiddle leaf tree. Thank you! There are a few factors involved in making sure your FLF ends up looking like a tree. Did I kill the branch when I pinched that top bud? What are your thoughts on tying the branches together at the bottom to keep them aligned as each trunk grows taller? I found this post while searching for an answer for my leaning branches. No growth whatsoever! To some extent, these plants can acclimatise to cooler weather. I put it in a new spot out of the direct sun and it seems to be doing better now. Or will the plant go into shock? Also, some of my leaves are getting puckery looking, not smooth but still green. I will be notching my ficus lyrata to promote branch growth. It's a banyan fig, which means that it begins its life high in the branches of another tree, then sends its roots down to the ground where it slowly strangles the host tree to death. Here’s a post on propagation that might help. Hi Anne, unfortunately if you trim the edges of the leaves, they won’t grow back! I’ve been trying to get a full spectrum grow light but they seem to be sold out everywhere I try or they wont be delivered for weeks. Overall, he’s very happy. Do you think placing the humidifier might near it might help? Hi Matt – the plant won’t keep growing from where it has been pruned, but it can still grow taller from branches that form after pruning. Carefully separate the roots and replant them in multiple pots. Plants that are staked or tied generally rely on that for their support. We moved it into a window but it only seems to be slowing the dropping down. I’m not so sure if it will have problems if the sun never physically hit the leaves? This may hinder their growth for a little while or require some time for them to recover. Two of the branches have dropped all leaves and have shriveled now. Built by Newcastle Creative Co. A post shared by Emily Connett – Dossier Blog (@dossierblog) on Mar 23, 2020 at 1:24am PDT. I pinched the top bud (main trunk) of my FLF. I’m happy to share what I’ve learnt, especially since there can be a lot of misinformation out there! Also, coloured lights don’t look so nice on display in our homes! Let me know in the comments if this was helpful or if you have anything else you’d like to know! Hi Meagsie, thanks for the feedback! Final tip - don’t strip leaves off the trunk until your fiddle leaf has established it’s new branches. If you’re after more info on how grow lights work, read this guide to Grow Lights for Indoor Plants. Is it better to leave those leaves for now if the spots are relatively small, or should I prune them off? A good tip may be that if your Compacta is already putting out new growth, it will likely respond well to pinching or pruning. I last watered the plant a week ago and while the top few inches of soil are very dry, the soil seems somewhat moist in the bottom of the pot and there are white bits in the soil near the drainage holes. All the best! I initially brought it inside the house for a month in fall, and the leaves slightly began to turn brown at the edges. This creates room for excess water to drain. Any suggestions on how to make my FLF look healthier and continue to grow? It is very healthy and loves it’s location but it is getting way too big. I wanted to ask about drainage – I recently bought a FLF, but the drainage holes are quite small at the bottom of the pot. FLFs are so versatile that they can take on a bushy appearance, or be grown and trained into a tree-shape. See if you can tell if they are attached (a low fork) or separate trunks. It’s up to you what you decide to do, depending on if you feel confident to do it and if you think your FLF is healthy enough to adapt to the change. I water every Saturday 5 cups of water and there are no brown spots on any leaves. Cancel reply. I’m sure its best to start this process while the plant is still young. Which one is my best bet to try and maximise the amount of full size FLF’s I’ll end up with? Only use a soft, damp or dry cloth to dust the leaves. The braiding does look stunning too, as long as you can plant them without doing too much damage to the existing roots. I’m lost and would appreciate your help. Contrary to popular advice, misting does little to nothing for increasing humidity! Now, what if your fiddle leaf fig tree has gotten too tall and you’d like to generate more branches below that main split? Thank you!! However, I haven’t found a lot of advice about leaving them outside. I’m sure there is some info if you look up braiding 🙂. If you’re new to using a fertilizer, read these tips first. Before he came to me, the grower must have chopped the main trunk (about halfway up) and there are two stems that have grown in a Y shape from that cut, so now the tree is growing out in two points rather than up. Keep in mind that FLFs like to be snug in pots so unless its very root bound, it should be ok in the same pot. They are all still green and looking like healthy but nothing changed!! If you run a type of air conditioning or heating system during winter, beware of the affect it can have on your plants. Be careful of removing too many leaves at once and leaving your FLF too bare. If you are happy with your FLF’s height and single trunk, you’ll need to work on strengthening the trunk so it can stand straight by itself. Hey Nathaniel, if the temperatures are fine for you they should be ok for the plant too! If you’re in the northern hemisphere, now is a pretty good time to give it a go. Got my first FLF 1 month ago. If there’s not enough leaves, your plant will not be able to get the nutrients it needs from sunlight and heightens its chances of being unhealthy or dying. So what would you recommend me doing? Once your FLF is at a height where you would like it to branch, prune or pinch out the tip or give notching a try to encourage branching. If you’re a Fiddle Leaf Fig fanatic like me, you’ll want to know exactly what winter means for your plant and how you can help it thrive through the cooler months. I have it facing North West in my bedroom in Camarillo, California. Pruning will signal to the plant to send out new shoots. Hey Melissa, pruning and pinching will encourage a bushier growth and branching, but if you’re wanting your FLF to grow tall, just make sure its getting enough light, water and nutrients 🙂 Pruning uses sharp secateurs to cut branches when they are growing too big and need to be trimmed, or to encourage other branches and leaves to grow. 🙂, I’m glad the info was helpful Virginia! The new growth above them is fine. I’m sure you’ve noticed that dry-skin feeling that comes with the cooler months. Because they are tropical rainforest plants, they don’t do too well in cold environments. If it’s summer where you are, there wouldn’t be any harm in trying. I’m guessing you’re thinking of repotting as the soil isn’t seeming to dry out in the middle? Cut around 1/3 of the way across the trunk and around 1/3 deep, at an angle. A single leaf will often grow roots when placed in water, but … They do a lot to help support the trunk and provide nutrients for health and growth. You should be able to tell if its rootbound by checking if there’s lots of visible roots on the soil surface, or if there’s roots poking out the bottom of the pot. Once you get the basics right, your FLF should stay happy! I have done top pinching for my Lyrata and thinking about doing it to my Compacta which is about 35inch tall, i am in early Spring of Australia, do you think Compacta will branch out as well as Lyrata? Thanks in advance! If it is getting to big, pruning is a great way to chop some of the length off and it also encourages branching, which can give you more of that tree shape. Young stems are green, and will then slowly turn brown. I’ve been reading up and appreciate all of your tips. My question is- where exactly do I cut the top off in order to branch? Because of this, your Fiddle Leaf Fig won’t have the same fertilizer requirements as it would during Spring or Summer. The leaf can still grow roots and live but it isn’t likely it will grow into anything else from a single leaf. Notching is total removal of a piece of bark. This past winter season, I was able to keep my FLFs growing new leaves with no negative wintery symptoms. Follow Emily on Instagram (@dossierblog) to stay up to date! mine has three trunks rather than one… is pruning it to a tree still possible? All the best! Dossier Blog is a collection of notes on and about creativity, travel & style. Founded in 2015, Dossier started as a place to record notes from Emily’s travels. If you have multiple trunks in the one pot, you could try separating them when you repot. I'm the new mom of a 3 foot Fiddle Leaf Fig tree. It’s finally thriving now. During most of the year, the weather is great here on the Gulf Coast for them to be outside. Hey Miah! Fiddle Leaf Fig Branching. If the branches were next to each other, it could be possible that something external to the plant itself caused the loss! Hi Emily, I’m in Adelaide and have a 6ft FLF that is doing quite well inside next to an East facing window. Thank you for your post it is very helpful foe me coz my FLF has 2 branches and it gives me an idea to see if its 2. Misting only helps with humidity for the minute or so that the water particles are sprayed into the air. Test the top 1-2 inches of soil is dry with your finger before watering fully again. If your cuttings were a leaf plus part of the stem, then they should most likely grow! I would say the main steps for thickening the trunk is giving them lots of light and using a quality fertlizer. If you don’t mind that, you can of course tie them together. Quite useful tips however I do not agree that they are slow growing and I’ll explain why..I have had my flf bush since 6/2017 and it was but 3 feet tall when it was purchased. Is it in the path of a heater or air con? Thanks for any help you might be able to give! Do you have any suggestions? Have you had any luck notching the trunk below the branches? Hello! If you notice these symptoms, you may want to consider running a humidifier or putting out pebble trays to help increase humidity. Keep in mind that there will always be some damage to the roots when you seperate them, because they will be so intertwined. You may want to do multiple notches, as not all of them may take. Wow! All the best! I’m still not sure what I should do about my bush Fiddle leaf tree… Its a small 4″ plant. There is a mix of about 4 which are 3f tish high and some much smaller ones. I did notice it likes me to water it 2 or more times a week with a lot of water. If it is too difficult to separate the three trunks, it may be best to keep them together to prevent too much damage from trying to untangle the roots. I already have a humidifier and I’m planning on getting a grow light. Thanks! strengthening a weak or leaning trunk here, How to Treat Spider Mites on a Fiddle Leaf Fig, 12 DIYs of Christmas #7: Make a Heart Planter Present,, 12 DIYs of Christmas: Coastal Napkin Rings, 12 DIYs of Christmas: Create a Faux Wood Fireplace, 12 DIYs of Christmas: Furoshiki Plant Gifts, A post shared by Emily Connett – Dossier Blog (@dossierblog). You can still split them but how successful it is will partly depend on how close together the trunks are or how intertwined the root system is. Do you have any suggestions about temperature regulation or am I worrying too much? We’ve had our very small FLF since last December and it’s always been fine. I just scratched the top a little (where I pinched it) and there’s still sap coming out of it. I want to cut it back to about 8′ and to be bushier, lollipop shaped if you will. It’s only got 3 healthy leaves left now and I’m very scared it’s going to die. Hope that helps! This is when they appear to stop growing, because of less-than-ideal environmental conditions (Fiddle Leafs are tropical plants!). Thank you! First, … There’s more info on branching here. I told my flf I was sorry and please come back to life. Would love your input. Another thing to do is to embrace the Y shape! Can I just lop off the longer branches? The lower leaves provide support for the trunk and help it to grow strong, which is important for a tree-form as they are top-heavy and more prone to bending or tipping. If your FLF has 5 trunks coming out of the soil, I wouldn’t suggest pruning them all off to leave a single, tree-shaped trunk as the plant will most likely suffer from the change. Now is a great time to be fertilizing them (if you aren’t already) as a quality fertilizer will give it a nutrients boost. Or would that damage the plant? I will check for root rot and repot tonight. This is a sign of life. 1. and do I cut off the branches with no leaves? 1 has 2 trunks and the other has 3. However, I live in NYC and I’m anticipating a really dark and dry winter. If I prune those two large branches from the trunk, will it encourage new growth at the top of the tree? Notify me via e-mail if anyone answers my comment. Its possible the white bits could be part of the soil (like perlite) or maybe some kind of funghus, which shouldn’t be harmful for the plant. Jerald. The fiddle-leaf fig tree is a slow grower; in winter it goes dormant. 🙂. 2. Ideas on that? More info in this post on brown spots. 🙂. Do this above a leaf node. I want to encourage branching by notching, but I’m worried this will impede its growth from the top. I live in NC where I can take it outside in the summer months so I do. hi tamara! Instead, it’s energy would be focused on rebuilding the roots. You must have the knack for FLFs! That link for “good fertilizer (this one is best for FLF’s)” – for a second, i thought it was a flat iron LOL 🙂 If they are still young, it will be easier to try separate them than if they are older (and therefore have a larger root system). Firstly be patient – it takes time for a tree to grow! Otherwise they should sprout again at the growth tip of the branch. Hope that helps 🙂. It was just bought and transported across London 3 weeks ago, so I don’t want to stress it too many times in a row. They are growing amazingly well and are constantly getting new leaves. © Dossier Blog. If you want screaming success with your fiddle leaf fig, read on my friend! Follow Us. Do you have any other questions about how to grow a Fiddle Leaf Fig from Bush to Tree? I really like the look of a really leavy fiddle. Thanks, I’ll go out and add a few notches right now. Apart from that a grow light would be very helpful, fingers crossed you can get your hands on one over there! Like other species of ficus, these plants like a lot of light, minimal water and they don’t do well with sudden changes in environment. Notching a Fiddle Leaf Fig may seem scary but it shouldn’t be! Brown spots around the edges of leaves are usually a sign the plant is too dry. If you see no change within a week to the bud below, go over the same spot again. The top is VERY sparse with 4 branches that have 1-7 leaves on them. As FLFs are tropical plants, they like to have upwards of 60% humidity. I’ve spent years now researching and reading up on Fiddle Leaf Figs, as well as growing and experimenting with my own. When I was only watering it once or less per week, the leaves had brown edges and there was not as much growth. I’ve noticed that 3 leaves near the bottom have yellowed and now I have cut back on watering. They will need water less often in winter but its always best to check if the top 2″ soil is dry rather than a timeframe. I generally add about 2 glasses of water at a time and it never drains through. I would say unless there’s signs that the plant is suffering from it, it isn’t necessary to repot. Fiddle Leaf Figs are tropical plants that LOVE humidity. By noon or so, the sun has risen over the top of our building, and for the rest of the day the apartment only gets lit by reflections and shadows. For more tips, read my guide to humidity for indoor plants. Hello, this is all so fascinating! I’ve also got a whole post about tips on leaning that might help too 🙂. Do I cut them to save the tree? I’m assuming to start braiding I’d need to cut off the lower leaves, correct? It may mean removing some of the lower leaves! Winter is renowned for dry air, which means your plants are probably feeling it even more than you are! You’ve heard this before, but have you … Here’s A specially-formulated one will also help the leaves grow closer together and the trunk to thicken. 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